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Pakistan to adopt a Gender Roadmap to achieve equality

September 19, 2021: A high-level meeting was chaired by the Asad Umar, Minister Planning Development and Special Initiatives in Islamabad on Saturday.

Member Social Sector & Devolution presented the draft gender roadmap which proposed gender integration across all national policies, programs, offices and key management processes. The roadmap is designed to close the gender gap in education and employment, simultaneously empowering the young women to yield a substantive SDG dividend, that can in turn catalyze the economic growth of Pakistan.

The agenda of Gender Development and Equality has been taken up as a national priority by the current Government. The final gender roadmap is a key product emerging from months’ long nation-wide iterative consultations engaging the National Youth Council, academicians, subject experts, national task forces, youth voices from across the globe, government officials and development partners. Several high impact interventions were discussed to mainstream gender across all key priorities.

The packages of high impact strategic interventions were proposed keeping in view the confronting challenges to inform mindful investment in closing the gender gap and creating equitable opportunities for women and girls.

The Minister Asad Umar underscored the importance of gender-transformative workplaces. He desired that a policy framework be developed based on deliberations and rapid research, identifying the current barriers faced by female workers in public and private sector organizations. The key recommendations outlined in the framework should not only guide development of a public sector program but must also be supported by necessary legal instruments to make working environment conducive and progressive for women.

During the meeting, the Minister Planning, Development and Special Initiatives expressed his concern over the rising proportion of out-of-school children following the pandemic globally as well as in Pakistan, sharing the Government’s intent in tackling this challenge as a national priority.

 The Minister highlighted the need for exploiting the e-school experiences from the pandemic and using COVID19 as an opportunity for introducing innovative e-solutions, e-schools and accelerated learning programs for reaching out of school children.

While reviewing the proposed innovative employment generating and skill-building strategies, the Minister advised that the same be reviewed in tandem with the existing interventions under the Kamyab Jawan Programme to consolidate efforts and resources under one umbrella for an optimum impact. The importance of dedicated transport facilities for young females was highlighted for both accessing educational and employment opportunities. The Minister desired for a comprehensive proposal to be presented in this regard in the coming week.

The minister emphasized the national priority accorded to gender empowerment and the urgency to respond to the current situation He asked for the proposed two-year roadmap to be presented before sectoral experts, industry, leaders, and policy think tanks, and their inputs sought while finalizing the same.

Press Release

Amnesty Scheme: ABAD demands to include taxpayers who filed...

September 19, 2021: Chairman Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) Fayyaz Ilyas, terming recent circular issued by Federal Board of Revenue regarding The Asset Declaration Ordinance-2019 (generally known as Amnesty Scheme) an appreciable step, has appealed Prime Minister Imran Khan, Federal Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin and Chairman Federal Board of Revenue Ashfaq Ahmed to allow those people to pay tax who had declared their assets under this scheme but could not pay taxes in stipulated time period.

In a statement, chairman ABAD said that The Assets Declaration Ordinance, 2019 was promulgated on May 14th, 2019, for payment of tax and declaration of corresponding assets by June 30th, 2019 and later on due date was extended till July 3rd, 2019. However, many of the people, who had declared their assets either could not pay tax against their declared assets or paid their due tax but could not submit their declarations, he said adding that the government should give one more chance to all taxpayers in this direction.

He said that the Prime Minister vision for granting Amnesty was to bring all undeclared wealth into book and raise the tax collection but the announcement of FBR to allow those people who had paid taxes under the said amnesty scheme to file their declaration is also a good step but with that all persons who had filed their declaration of assets also should be allowed to pay taxes so that FBR itself can get benefit to get its target of tax collection for this year.

He said that I hope the government will ask the FBR to allow pay taxes to those people who had filed declarations of their assets and give relief to them.

It is to mention that the FBR has decided to allow filing of declarations for all those citizen taxpayers/persons who deposited tax under the Ordinance within the due date i.e. July 3rd, 2019 but could not file their declarations due to any reason. The system has been enabled for the purpose and all taxpayers can now file their declarations between September 10th, 2021 till September 25th, 2021.

Press Release

Weekly Economic Roundup

September 19, 2021 (MLN): The financial highlights of the country are brought to light with the economic and financial data releases over the course of the week.

  • Pakistan’s current account balance (CAB) posted a deficit of $1.47billion in August 2021, compared to a surplus of $225million in the corresponding month last year.
  • Pakistan’s trade deficit in services ballooned by 2.9x YoY to $355 million during August 2021, from a deficit of $123mn recorded in the same month last fiscal year.
  • Foreign direct investment in Pakistan stood at $113.2 million during August’21, showing an increase of 26% MoM against the net inflow of $89.9mn recorded in July’21.
  • Pak Rupee's Real Effective Exchange Rate Index (REER) decreased to a provisional value of 97.4 in August’21 compared to 99.4 in July’21.
  • The total liquid foreign reserves held by the country stood at US$27,064.9 million on 10-September-2021.
  • Imports into Pakistan during August 2021 amounted to Rs. 1,081,961 million (provisional) as against Rs. 889,779 million (provisional) in July 2021 and Rs. 556,064 million during August 2020, showing an increase of 21.60% over July 2021 and of 94.57% over August 2020.
  • Exports from Pakistan during August 2021 amounted to Rs. 368,847 million (provisional) as against Rs. 373,412 million (provisional) in July 2021 and Rs. 265,600 million during August 2020, showing a decrease of 1.22% over July 2021 but an increase of 38.87% over August 2020.
  • The import bill of petroleum products during the month of August’21 stood at $1.76billion, depicting a colossal surge of 2.3x YoY while on MoM basis, the import of the same group surge by 32%, compared to the same period last year.
  • With a contribution of 15% to the total import bill during the month of August’21, the import bill of the machinery group surged by 52% YoY to $984 million.
  • The total export of textile products witnessed an upsurge of 45.2% YoY to clock in at $1.46 billion during August’21. When compared with the figures of the previous month, exports of textile commodities depicted a marginal decline of 0.57%.
  • The trade value of food exports from the country in August’21 stood at around $325.75million, showing a robust surge of 48% YoY from $220mn in August 2020.
  • The unemployment rate in Pakistan jumped from 5.8% in 2017-18 to 6.9% in 2018-19, the Labor Force Survey (LFS) published by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics revealed.
  • The prices of petrol and high-speed diesel (HSD) have moved up by Rs5 and Rs5.01 per litre, respectively. While, the prices of Kerosene Oil and Light Diesel Oil enhanced by Rs5.46 and 5.92 per litre, according to a notice issued by Finance Division.
  • The Large-Scale Manufacturing Industries (LSMI) of the country witnessed a growth of 2.25% YoY during July’21 compared to the same month last year.
  • The Monetary Policy Committee of SBP will meet on Monday, September 20, 2021, at SBP Karachi to decide about the Monetary Policy. Later on, SBP will issue the Monetary Policy Statement through a press release on the same day.
  • The government has so far released an amount of Rs1.625 billion to execute seven ongoing and six new petroleum-related projects under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP 2021-22) aimed at accelerating oil and gas exploration activities and achieving self-sufficiency in the energy sector.
  • The government has so far released an amount of Rs936.046 million to execute around 17 aviation sector projects under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP 2021-22).
  • Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) in an effort to facilitate overseas Pakistanis has allowed tax-exempted remittances through international exchange companies, money transfer companies and money services businesses from abroad.
  • Copyright Mettis Link News

PSX Closing Bell: Glass Jaw..

September 17, 2021 (MLN): The capital market on Friday remained positive in the first half of the session as the investors were under the influence of PKR’s gaining momentum in the interbank market.

However, the bears took lead in the later hours owing to the data of Current Account Balance (CAB) released by the State Bank of Pakistan, as per which, CAB posted a deficit of $1.47billion in August 2021, compared to a surplus of $225million in the corresponding month last year. In the previous month, CAB posted a deficit of $814mn, suggesting that the deficit jumped notably by 81% MoM mainly attributable to an increase in imports.

In addition, the news of the postponement of the cricket series between Newzealand and Pakistan due to security threats has also smashed the investor’s confidence in the local bourse.

Resultantly, the benchmark KSE100 index lost 284.38 points to close the trade at 46,636.08.

The Index traded in a range of 628.35 points or 1.34 percent of previous close, showing an intraday high of 47,183.08 and a low of 46,554.73.

Of the 98 traded companies in the KSE100 Index 34 closed up 60 closed down, while 4 remained unchanged. Total volume traded for the index was 163.22 million shares.

Sector wise, the index was let down by Cement with 73 points, Commercial Banks with 58 points, Technology & Communication with 57 points, Oil & Gas Marketing Companies with 27 points and Power Generation & Distribution with 19 points.

The most points taken off the index was by LUCK which stripped the index of 59 points followed by MEBL with 37 points, ENGRO with 29 points, TRG with 29 points and SYS with 28 points.

Sectors propping up the index were Fertilizer with 13 points, Automobile Assembler with 8 points, Refinery with 6 points, Textile Spinning with 2 points and Synthetic & Rayon with 2 points.

The most points added to the index was by FFC which contributed 43 points followed by NBP with 20 points, MTL with 17 points, KTML with 10 points and BAHL with 9 points.

All Share Volume decreased by 17.89 Million to 387.29 Million Shares. Market Cap decreased by Rs.43.89 Billion.

Total companies traded were 525 compared to 518 from the previous session. Of the scrips traded 173 closed up, 327 closed down while 25 remained unchanged.

Total trades decreased by 3,943 to 126,616.

Value Traded decreased by 0.27 Billion to Rs.16.24 Billion

CompanyVolume

Top Ten by Volume

Worldcall Telecom42,415,000
TRG Pakistan25,234,230
Byco Petroleum Pakistan20,913,000
TPL Properties20,907,500
The Bank of Punjab19,419,500
Telecard18,065,500
TPL Corp11,383,000
Unity Foods11,085,536
BankIslami Pakistan11,053,500
Silkbank10,042,000

 

SectorVolume

Top Sector by Volume

Technology & Communication110,781,230
Commercial Banks61,249,021
Miscellaneous28,593,900
Refinery25,633,226
Food & Personal Care Products24,093,266
Cement23,496,037
Oil & Gas Marketing Companies13,351,791
Textile Spinning11,610,100
Engineering9,681,809
Inv. Banks / Inv. Cos. / Securities Cos.9,547,931

 

 

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CCoE approves Winter Incentive Package on Incremental Consumption

September 17th, 2021: A meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCOE) was held under the Chairmanship of the Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar here in Islamabad on Friday.

CCoE approved the summary submitted by the Power Division on the winter incentive package on incremental consumption for all domestic, commercial, and general services consumers of XW- DISCOs and K- Electrics from 1st November 2021 till 28th February 2022.

CCoE also considered revision of Gas tariff slabs for the domestic consumers during the winter season of FY 21-22 submitted by the Petroleum Division.  The forum discussed the agenda in detail and outline that gas is a precious energy resource and resultantly import of LNG is a large drain on Pakistan's foreign exchange. It constitutes a major part of the country's total imports and consumer spending. It is now critically important to realize both on an individual and national level that energy resources need to be conserved by switching to energy-efficient appliances.  Keeping in view a committee headed by Minister for S&T Mr. Shibli Faraz has been formed. This committee will give its recommendations within 30 days on the measures to ensure the use of energy-efficient appliances through various fiscal and administrative incentives along with regulatory actions to be taken to promote these appliances to rationalize consumption, reduce consumer’s monthly expenses, and resultantly reducing the country's energy import bill.

The meeting was attended by the Minister for Energy, Minister for Maritime Affairs, SAPM on Power, Petroleum & Revenue, SAPM on CPEC, and representatives of regulatory authorities and senior officials of Ministries/Divisions also participated in the meeting.

Press Release

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